One of the first things I wanted to know when I started paddle boarding was, “how much do paddle boards weigh?” Because before I ever took a paddle stroke, I knew I’d have to lug my SUP to the shore and back, and then hoist it onto my car roof to transport home.
Choosing the right paddle board that’s weighted correctly for you depends on a number of factors beyond its weight. The whole process can get confusing as there are many different types and size paddle boards to choose from. So I did a bunch of research and summarized paddle board weight considerations for you.
How much do paddle boards weigh? Paddle boards weigh, on average, about 30 pounds. Most paddle boards range from 15 to 40 pounds. Paddle board weights depend upon the type of board it is and what materials are used to craft it. Plastic boards are heaviest, carbon boards are lightest and epoxy/fiberglass boards are in-between.
Now that you know the weight of a paddle board depends upon what type it is and what it’s made of, let’s dig down to a little more detail below. We’ll discuss how much inflatable boards weigh compared to solid stand-up paddle boards, what size board you need depending on your weight, and how to choose the right board. We’ll also give examples of different paddle boards and their weights.
So, if you’re ready to learn more about paddle board weights, then let’s get started!
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How Heavy Is a Paddle Board?
Paddle boards can be relatively light, heavy, and everything in-between. They range from 15 pounds to 40 pounds, or even more. The average weight is between 24 and 30 pounds for traditional boards. Light-weight boards are often more expensive but also less durable.
Larger, heavier boards tend to cost more than shorter, lighter boards. This is due to the amount of materials needed to make them as well as the time it takes to craft them. Paddle boards are an investment so take your time, do your research and choose wisely.
Lighter boards are easier to carry, load, unload and transport. Heavier boards are harder to move and carry, often requiring two people to load and unload them. An extra pair of hands helps avoid mishandling (and thus damaging) the board and/or injuring you.
How Much Does a 12-Foot Paddle Board Weigh?
Medium Board Weights
A 12 foot paddle board is one of the more popular length SUPs. It’s light enough for one person to carry, has enough buoyancy to support medium to heavier paddlers, and it transports on top of most mid-size cars and SUVs.
Popular paddle boards that range from 10 to 12 feet are usually referred to as medium-sized boards. They can weigh anywhere from 20 to 30 pounds, depending on the type of board it is and what it’s made out of.
Long Board Weights
A long board is a paddle board that is 12 feet 6 inches or more in length.
Long boards weigh more due to the amount of material used to make them. In general these long boards are thicker which adds to the board weight as well. Long paddle boards have increased stability and are ideal for cruising calm, open waters, and relaxed, smooth riding.
For light-weight paddle boarders, long paddle boards provide a faster, more maneuverable ride. And for heavier riders, longer boards that weigh more give them added stability while paddling.
How Much Do Inflatable Paddle Boards Weigh?
Inflatable paddle boards are designed to be super portable and to a certain extent lighter than SUP boards constructed of harder, solid materials.
Inflatable paddle boards can be super light-weight and great for those who love to travel, but have limited room to store and transport their paddle boards while not in use. Easy to carry and transport, inflatables can weigh as little as 17 pounds and as much as 22 pounds. The standard hard paddle board weighs approximately 30 pounds, in comparison.
Inflatable paddle boards are great for calm water paddling as well as whitewater paddling. You can use them to surf, but they aren’t as good at catching waves or as smooth as the harder, heavier solid paddle boards.
How Much Do Paddle Boards Weigh by Length?
Stand-up paddle boards usually weigh around 30 pounds, depending on the style and size of the board. Short SUP boards can be as light as 15 pounds whereas long paddle boards can weigh close to 40 pounds. The lighter boards are generally more expensive to purchase but aren’t as durable as the heavier boards.
- Short boards are less than 9 feet long and great for advanced paddle boarders who like to ocean surf or youth paddlers.
- Medium boards are 10 to 12 feet long and ideal for beginners or intermediate paddlers who prefer to cruise calm lake waters.
- Long boards are 12 to 14 feet long and used by intermediate or advanced, or heavier paddlers for both touring and/or racing.
Related Article: How Long is a Paddle Board (SUP Length Sizing)?
How Much Do Paddle Boards Weigh by Construction Material?
Most modern paddle boards are made of plastic, foam, wood, fiberglass/epoxy, carbon fiber, or PVC for inflatables. Each of these materials has its own inherent weight attributes. Some materials make the same length, width and thickness SUP board weigh more and some construction materials make them weigh less.
Here are those materials listed from their inherent relative weights, lightest to heaviest.
- Carbon Fiber – Carbon composite boards are super lightweight and inherently fast, but are also easily damaged and expensive.
- Foam – Foam boards are pretty light and inexpensive, but they are easily dented and damaged.
- PVC – Inflatable boards are super-convenient for transporting and are mid-range in SUP weight, but they lack the performance and durability of many solid boards.
- Fiberglass – Fiberglass is the seeming best of weight, durability, and maneuverability, but they can be expensive and tough to store and transport.
- Wood – Wood is heavier, harder to keep in good shape and expensive, but there’s nothing cooler or more nostalgic if you’re looking for the experience over the price.
- Plastic – Plastic boards are durable, cheap, and will hold a lot of weight. The tradeoff is they’re heavy, heavy.
Related Article: What are Paddle Boards Made of? (SUP Construction)
How Much Weight Can a Stand-Up Paddle Board Hold?
Paddle Board Buoyancy and Volume
The amount of weight a paddle board can hold depends upon the board’s volume. Roughly speaking, paddle board volume is a measure of a paddle board’s buoyancy. It’s a SUP’s ability to support and float weight, and it’s based on SUP, length, width, thickness, and SUP construction materials.
Paddle boards are also weight-rated by the manufacturer in pounds or kilograms. For example, one board may have a weight limit of 200 pounds, which is suitable for 1 person, whereas another board may have a larger volume and be rated to carry up to 500 pounds, or multiple people.
Boards with higher weight limits tend to be wider and larger overall. Generally speaking, the heavier the person, the longer and wider (and often heavier) the board should be. Choosing the correct weight capacity is the key to a manageable paddle board that will keep you high enough above the water so you can maneuver it properly.
It may be too obvious, but longer, wider boards capable of supporting larger paddlers are going to be heavier, in the 40 pound range. While shorter, narrower and thinner boards for lighter and shorter paddlers will be more lightweight in the 20-30 pound range.
What Size SUP Do I Need?
Getting the right stand-up paddle board for your weight is important. The rule of thumb is usually the heavier you are, the heavier your paddle board should be. For general use, the most popular boards are either 10 or 11 feet long and anywhere from 32 to 34 inches wide. If stability is what you’re after, then choose a board that is 34 inches or wider.
For beginners and those wanting to get the best stand-up paddle board for their weight, simply multiply how much you weigh in pounds by 1.0 and then 1.4 to give you the ideal volume range. For example, if you weigh 150 pounds, then the range you should be looking for is 150 to 210L. If you aren’t a novice paddle boarder, choose which of the following best applies to you and then calculate accordingly.
SUP sizing formulas by paddle boarding type:
- Fishing – body weight plus all gear weight times 1.0 to 1.4
- Intermediate – body weight times 0.8 to 1.1
- Surf – body weight times 0.5 to 1.0
- Touring – body weight times 1.0 to 1.1
- Yoga – body weight times 1.0 to 1.2
As a general rule, if you weigh less than 140 pounds, choose a short board, less than 10 feet long. If you weigh between 140 and 200 pounds, choose a 10 or 11 foot board. And, if you weigh over 200 pounds, choose an 11 or 12 foot board. Most of these boards will weigh between 25 to 35 pounds and be pretty easy for the average person to carry.
What Size Paddle Board Do I Need for My Weight?
Plastic paddle boards are quite heavy, weighing about 40 pounds or more. Epoxy paddle boards range in weight from light to heavy (and everything in-between). Carbon paddle boards are the lightest, weighing as little at 15 pounds.
Generally speaking, when trying to determine what size paddle board is best for you, add 9 or 10 inches to your height. You should also consider how much you weigh, your experience level and where you intend to paddle. And don’t forget to consider how much travelling you intend to do with the board and whether or no you’ll be able to carry, load, unload and transport it yourself.
For a more in-depth look at SUP sizing by weight, take a look at the following related article: How Long is a Paddle Board? (SUP Length Sizing)
Paddle Board Weight Summary
In conclusion, paddle board weights range from heavy to light depending on the type of paddle board and the material used to make it. Plastic boards weigh the most, carbon boards weigh the least and epoxy boards are somewhere in-between.
SUP boards range anywhere from 15 to 40 pounds but the average weight is around 24 to 30 pounds.
Picking the right board depends upon your height and weight, where you want to paddle and how you intend to use your paddle board. There are many different paddle boards with as many different best uses to choose from, so do your research before you buy. Go online or visit your local sporting good shop to ensure you get the right paddle board for your needs.